New Delhi/Canberra, Dec 8: The formation of AUKUS, a trilateral security pact between Australia, the US and the UK, in the Indo-Pacific region, has put China on the backfoot, undermining its objective of bringing Australia to its knees by unleashing a severe trade and tariff war against it.

Peeling away the rhetoric reveals China’s real and absolute worry with the AUKUS pact. It has to do with the west involving Japan in its bid to contain China even without having to formally include Tokyo to join the pact. SupChina, a New York-based, China-focused news, information, and business services platform, put the finger on the pulse, reporting: “With Japan at one vertex and India at the other, Australia’s nuclear submarines will allow the Allies to close a “strategic triangle at the second island chain’s southernmost point, shortening the distance for reconnaissance, monitoring, and rapid response against China, as well as achieving long-range hypersonic precision strike capabilities.”

While the Chinese are concerned that Australia, thanks to AUKUS, will set a “dangerous precedent by becoming the first non-nuclear weapon state to possess nuclear propulsion technology”, they seem to forget their own role “in tipping the regional nuclear balance, such as its ongoing rapid expansion of its nuclear arsenal in hundreds of new silos and mobile ICBMs, its recent test of nuclear-capable hypersonic missiles, or even President X?’s festive April commissioning of a nuclear submarine “to manage the South China Sea”.